In a stunning illustration of the cascading impacts of the Trump administration’s failure to protect public health, Southern California officials were forced to waive air quality measures for crematoriums to allow the cremation of the thousands of people who died of COVID-19 and are straining morgue capacities. Crematoriums are limited in the number of human remains they can cremate each month based on potential air quality impacts, but with death rates in Los Angeles County double their usual rate, the “backlog” of bodies “constitutes a threat to public health,” the LA County Department of Public Health concluded. Research has shown links between increased COVID-19 death rates and long-term exposure to air pollution — harms disproportionately borne by people of color. (NPR, Earther, The Guardian, Slate, E&E $, CNN, Buzzfeed, LA Magazine)